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Bioengineering Embryonic Stem Cell Microenvironments for the Study of Breast Cancer
College of Nanoscale Science & Engineering, University at Albany (SUNY), Albany, NY 12202, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 21 September 2011; in revised form: 27 October 2011 / Accepted: 31 October 2011 / Published: 8 November 2011
Abstract: Breast cancer is the most prevalent disease amongst women worldwide and metastasis is the main cause of death due to breast cancer. Metastatic breast cancer cells and embryonic stem (ES) cells display similar characteristics. However, unlike metastatic breast cancer cells, ES cells are nonmalignant. Furthermore, embryonic microenvironments have the potential to convert metastatic breast cancer cells into a less invasive phenotype. The creation of in vitro embryonic microenvironments will enable better understanding of ES cell-breast cancer cell interactions, help elucidate tumorigenesis, and lead to the restriction of breast cancer metastasis. In this article, we will present the characteristics of breast cancer cells and ES cells as well as their microenvironments, importance of embryonic microenvironments in inhibiting tumorigenesis, convergence of tumorigenic and embryonic signaling pathways, and state of the art in bioengineering embryonic microenvironments for breast cancer research. Additionally, the potential application of bioengineered embryonic microenvironments for the prevention and treatment of invasive breast cancer will be discussed.
Keywords: stem cell; microenvironment; hydrogel; three-dimensional culture; breast cancer; metastasis; co-culture
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Cite This Article
MDPI and ACS Style
Raof, N.A.; Mooney, B.M.; Xie, Y. Bioengineering Embryonic Stem Cell Microenvironments for the Study of Breast Cancer. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2011, 12, 7662-7691.
Raof NA, Mooney BM, Xie Y. Bioengineering Embryonic Stem Cell Microenvironments for the Study of Breast Cancer. International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2011; 12(11):7662-7691.
Raof, Nurazhani Abdul; Mooney, Bridget M.; Xie, Yubing. 2011. "Bioengineering Embryonic Stem Cell Microenvironments for the Study of Breast Cancer." Int. J. Mol. Sci. 12, no. 11: 7662-7691.